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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:51 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:24 am
Posts: 3
Hi,

It's decision making time while planning for a custom Ti frame and I've come to a dilemma which calls for some communal wisdom from others who have gone before me. :D

I'm using mechanical Ultegra 6700 for a while now but could see myself upgrading to Di2 (or any other equivalent electronic groupset) realistically two years down the line. However, it seems that I need to make a decision to have the frame drilled for internal Di2 routing now or go with the usual external cable bosses and use external routing for Di2 when the time comes for the change.

Obviously, I would like the frame to look as pleasing as possible aesthetically and the clean, cable-free lines of a internally-cabled frame is very appealing. The first option of going with external bosses means I would have them sticking out when I switch to Di2 later on. Not the best looking choice. The second option means I must commit to Di2 now and spend to get it together with the frame. This I could do but I would rather wait a couple of generations for various reasons.

The third option is to get the frame drilled but still put in external bosses for a mechanical groupset - kind of best of both worlds. But this doesn't address the problem of the bosses hanging around when Di2 comes. It also means I have holes in the frame plugged by rubber in the mean time. :?

I can't believe I'm the first person who has ever come to this crossroad and face this dilemma. Looking at the portfolios of more than a few custom makers have shown me a slight bias towards drilled-for-Di2 frames.

Your thoughts and advice please?

Thanks.


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Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:51 am 


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:05 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:52 pm
Posts: 156
Location: NZ
I did and perhaps like many others, just made the decision quietly.

You should see if you could 'persuade' your builder to come up with a provision to change internal mechanical to electronic ie have both. The plastic bike makers are already offering.

Faced with having to make the choice, to me, electronic makes more sense for a TT bike but '$ + weight = mechanical' rule for the roadie.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 2:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:24 am
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Quote:
I did and perhaps like many others, just made the decision quietly.

You should see if you could 'persuade' your builder to come up with a provision to change internal mechanical to electronic ie have both. The plastic bike makers are already offering.

Faced with having to make the choice, to me, electronic makes more sense for a TT bike but '$ + weight = mechanical' rule for the roadie.


Thanks for the reply. Unfortunately, my powers of persuasion are not strong enough. Comparing a custom Ti frame with a plastic bike would probably make further discussion very awkward.

You make a salient point about "$ + weight". On that basis, what did you choose for your BB and headtube + fork? (Tapered/oversize etc.)

Thanks.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 2:29 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:04 pm
Posts: 59
I just built up a custom Ti bike and had this debate, so I'll share my perspective and suggest a 4th alternative for you. I went with Di2 internal routing and a Di2 groupset. The look is very clean and it works great.

The 4th option: Ask your shop about some cable guides that can bet attached to the frame via metal collars. I haven't seen them, but I hear that they can be found. Get your frame drilled for Di2 and have the holes plugged with grommets. It won't look really clean for the few first years but you can remove the metal collars when you upgrade to Di2 and you won't have brazed on cable guides for life.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 4:55 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 8:16 pm
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Just go Di2 now- cable operated group sets are an anachronism, you're not planning on running 27&1/4" wheels I assume?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:23 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 9:28 pm
Posts: 904
I also just had a custom ti frameset built.
I went external for mechanical group.
After riding internal cabled bikes for several years, I wanted something that shifted flawlessly and was easy
to work on- so external cables fit the bill.
I also wanted flawless bearing surfaces that are durable and noise free. So Chris King headset and threaded bb.
I did go for tapered steered fork so I have the King headset that looks integrated on top and has a big cup on the bottom- it is actually really cool.
I used a mechanical Dura-Ace 9000 group. It is flawless. The only thing I could possible gain from DI2 is the possibility of using the climbing shifter on the tops.
There you have it. My goal was to have a sweet but simple bike. Noise free and easy to work on. Mission accomplished.
It is 1 lb heavier than the carbon bike that it replaced. But it does not go slower anywhere that I can tell and it is way more comfortable.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 10:48 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:52 pm
Posts: 156
Location: NZ
To be honest, my research did not go deep wrt tapered headset and bb. For the former, I'm a small/light person so don't think that I'll be pushing the boundaries of std 1.125" and for the latter external outboard bb is currently the most standard.

Mine will be internally cabled, for the clean look and the minute aero gains (???).

I'm crystal-balling perhaps wishful thinking that mecahnical will be around for a while yet. I'll be more concerned about disc brakes taking over; sorry if that is throwing you a wobbly as another thing worthwhile considering. It's actually not that easy buying/choosing a bespoke bike.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 2:04 pm 
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shimmeD wrote:
I'm crystal-balling perhaps wishful thinking that mecahnical will be around for a while yet. I'll be more concerned about disc brakes taking over; sorry if that is throwing you a wobbly as another thing worthwhile considering. It's actually not that easy buying/choosing a bespoke bike.


This is the truth. There is always something "around the corner" but at present it is really hard to make up your mind about a bike you intend to ride for the long haul. My guess is that mechanical is going to be with us for a long while. There are just too many great frames out there that will need new groupsets, but once Shimano gets electronic down to the 105 level I think we'll see half of road bikes sold with it. I'm less certain about disc brakes because they involve such a change in frame size and wheel selection. All the justifications for it seem to pivot on some edge case where they are marginally better, but I don't see the breakthrough advantage relative to the hassles.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:57 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 4:02 am
Posts: 1959
Location: NoVA/DC
I'd go internal drilled that will fit full housing if you go mechanical. Although it adds weight, the cable friction issues with full housing are really unfounded.
The main issue is to make sure that the hole at the head tube is large enough for two housing sections instead of just one wire.

Sent from my EVO using Tapatalk 4 Beta


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:41 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:52 pm
Posts: 156
Location: NZ
Ahhhh, just get mechanical now and build another frame with electronic. Didn't some mtb pioneer say that wealth should be measured by how many bikes one owns? Alas, I have to admit that I'm just a poor boy.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:24 am
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dgran wrote:
I just built up a custom Ti bike and had this debate, so I'll share my perspective and suggest a 4th alternative for you. I went with Di2 internal routing and a Di2 groupset. The look is very clean and it works great.

The 4th option: Ask your shop about some cable guides that can bet attached to the frame via metal collars. I haven't seen them, but I hear that they can be found. Get your frame drilled for Di2 and have the holes plugged with grommets. It won't look really clean for the few first years but you can remove the metal collars when you upgrade to Di2 and you won't have brazed on cable guides for life.


Glad you're happy with your choice! Your 4th option is an idea! I remember those collars from way back. Thanks for the suggestion. Will look into this possibility.

Dammit wrote:
Just go Di2 now- cable operated group sets are an anachronism, you're not planning on running 27&1/4" wheels I assume?


How could you tell? :wink: I'll continue to run them wheels for as long as Sheldon carries them. :wink:

boots2000 wrote:
I also just had a custom ti frameset built.
I went external for mechanical group.
After riding internal cabled bikes for several years, I wanted something that shifted flawlessly and was easy
to work on- so external cables fit the bill.
I also wanted flawless bearing surfaces that are durable and noise free. So Chris King headset and threaded bb.
I did go for tapered steered fork so I have the King headset that looks integrated on top and has a big cup on the bottom- it is actually really cool.
I used a mechanical Dura-Ace 9000 group. It is flawless. The only thing I could possible gain from DI2 is the possibility of using the climbing shifter on the tops.
There you have it. My goal was to have a sweet but simple bike. Noise free and easy to work on. Mission accomplished.
It is 1 lb heavier than the carbon bike that it replaced. But it does not go slower anywhere that I can tell and it is way more comfortable.


Very well put and reasoned! You're making me take a second look at mechanical...arggh.

shimmeD wrote:
To be honest, my research did not go deep wrt tapered headset and bb. For the former, I'm a small/light person so don't think that I'll be pushing the boundaries of std 1.125" and for the latter external outboard bb is currently the most standard.

Mine will be internally cabled, for the clean look and the minute aero gains (???).

I'm crystal-balling perhaps wishful thinking that mecahnical will be around for a while yet. I'll be more concerned about disc brakes taking over; sorry if that is throwing you a wobbly as another thing worthwhile considering. It's actually not that easy buying/choosing a bespoke bike.


Your logic is appealing as well. I do think mechanical will be around for a while yet. The single most prohibitive factor for Di2 ownership is cost. Ui2 costs at much as mechanical Dura Ace. Your average cyclist (working bloke with a family and monthly payments to meet) can realistically justify mechanical Ultegra, not Dura Ace. I may well be wrong, but I don't see rim brakes going away anytime soon for road bikes. Cross bikes possibly will see a wider adoption but discs on road bikes are a solution looking for a problem.

I agree. It's not all that easy getting a custom frame if one puts some thought into the process.

dgran wrote:
This is the truth. There is always something "around the corner" but at present it is really hard to make up your mind about a bike you intend to ride for the long haul. My guess is that mechanical is going to be with us for a long while. There are just too many great frames out there that will need new groupsets, but once Shimano gets electronic down to the 105 level I think we'll see half of road bikes sold with it. I'm less certain about disc brakes because they involve such a change in frame size and wheel selection. All the justifications for it seem to pivot on some edge case where they are marginally better, but I don't see the breakthrough advantage relative to the hassles.


Well said. I think most of us just want to buy into the technology at the point where the "something around the corner" has just passed us by and not before. Nobody likes to pay full retail for something only to find out a month later that the new model is out. And we are still turning the corner right now.

thisisatest wrote:
I'd go internal drilled that will fit full housing if you go mechanical. Although it adds weight, the cable friction issues with full housing are really unfounded.
The main issue is to make sure that the hole at the head tube is large enough for two housing sections instead of just one wire.

Sent from my EVO using Tapatalk 4 Beta


I don't quite understand. Why the need to make the hole at the head tube large enough for two housing sections?

shimmeD wrote:
Ahhhh, just get mechanical now and build another frame with electronic. Didn't some mtb pioneer say that wealth should be measured by how many bikes one owns? Alas, I have to admit that I'm just a poor boy.


Alas, I'm not made of money myself. :(


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Posted: Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:13 pm 


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